3 Easy Ways to Curb Emotional Eating
By Sandy Schroeder
Emotional eating is real. Just ask me. I can confirm the whole process. When stress strikes, it’s all too easy to polish off a tub of hummus or guacamole without even thinking. The American Psychological Association agrees. They found 38 percent of adults had turned to food to relieve stress in the last month. That’s a lot of dip.
WellAndGood.com took a close look at emotional eating and came up with some approaches that sound very workable.
Go to the source - Find out just what is bothering you when you begin to eat mindlessly. Don’t wait until you are all the way through that bag of cookies. The minute the urge surfaces, take a timeout to figure out what is happening. Recent issues with family, extra projects at work, or a budget review of expenses may be the real culprits. Find something healthy to munch on that you actually like, such as cherry tomatoes or bell pepper strips, and do some brainstorming about the real problem. As you actually face the issue your hunger may drop way back.
Load up your fridge - Level out the problem as you stock your fridge with grapes, carrots, hardboiled eggs, string cheese, Greek yogurt, apples or pears. Add sparkling water, sugar-free teas and low sugar fruit juices. Clear out any existing temptations and check the cabinets for cookies, crackers and chips. Keep the ball rolling as you round up more healthy choices for the freezer, tucking in lots of frozen vegetables, real fruit juice popsicles and healthy leftovers.
Do a quick switch - When tension keeps building and you are about to turn to your favorite franchise for a burger, choose something else to do. If you like to soak in the tub, or let go of stress as you settle onto your yoga mat, either may work to help you unwind minus the calories. A cup of hot tea, a chat with a friend over coffee, or a call to your mom might work, too.
If these simple steps work for you, keep looking for more alternatives to emotional eating. The more options you have, the easier it may become to sidestep the problem. As always, if your issues with emotional eating persist, see your doctor to work through the issues.
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